Superannuation funds need proactive communication and to become organisations that partnered with members to support their financial wellbeing in order to encourage member engagement, according to EY.
In an analysis, EY partner – national superannuation leader, Maree Pallisco, said superannuation funds’ communication mechanisms needed to allow for proactive communication to make it easy for members to ask questions or talk to their fund.
She said it was “a big deal” if funds did not pop up when members made super-related searches online.
“The (erroneous) impression this creates for members is that they can’t go to their super funds with super questions. As a first step to becoming visible in their members’ lives, funds need to correct this misconception,” Pallisco said.
Pallisco noted that as well as educating members and bridging the unmet advice gap, super funds needed to find a way to support members’ needs.
“The answer may be to transition from an organisation that looks after your money to one that partners with you to support your financial wellbeing. That means showing up in the moments that matter – both good (first job, marriage, kids) and bad (redundancy, bankruptcy),” she said.
“This is not about offering financial advice, but rather ensuring members understand how super works and what their options relating to it are in key life moments.”
Pallisco also said to earn trust funds needed to position themselves as non-judgemental, trusted advisers who members could turn too when they were unsure of their financial options as only six-in-10 Australians trusted their fund to act in their best interest.
“Consumers are drawn to brands that make them a better version of themselves – organisations that help their customers grow, thrive and prosper. Could funds build member engagement around that type of value proposition?” she said.
“For super funds, 2021 should be the year of the pivot. The year funds join the public conversation, get to know their members and decide how best to support them. We need Australians to become more informed about and involved with their retirement savings. Super funds should be leading this conversation.”